This article appears in print in the July 2018 issue and was written in partnership with Seattle Business magazine. Click here for a free subscription to Seattle Business and click here to subscribe to Seattle magazine.
This March, an unusually subdued guest dropped by Jimmy Kimmel Live. Though once widely beloved by millions of American children, Toys R Us mascot, Geoffrey the Giraffe, had recently fallen upon hard times. Earlier in the evening, the late-night host had declared that Amazon, the Seattle-based online retailer, “won’t rest until every other store is an abandoned warehouse teeming with raccoons.” Everybody “bought toys on Amazon, and now I’m out of a job,” the mascot agreed before stumbling off the stage and into the shadows where he and the toy purveyor join other once-untouchable stores, including Sears, Staples, Payless, RadioShack and JCPenney, that have found themselves irrelevant in rapidly changing times.
As Amazon casts its shadow Read more